Siemens AG (SIE) plans to introduce technology in 2015 that will allow wind-turbine electricity to be converted into gas, giving wind farms an alternative revenue stream when the grid is fully charged.
The electrolyser, a soccer-field sized plant that converts power into storable hydrogen, is in the testing phase, said Michael Weinhold, chief technology officer of Siemens’ energy businesses. It promises to overcome the challenge of how to harness fluctuating electricity output from wind farms, especially at night when demand is at its lowest.
Siemens, based in Munich, allots 1 billion euros ($1.3 billion) annually to devising new technology for the energy industry. Wind farms have suffered commercially because power can’t be stored on a large scale. By contrast, the converted hydrogen can be stored by feeding it into the gas grid.
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